Parsnips may be given to baby at around 8 months of age; their delicate nutty sweetness – especially when it has been enhanced by winter frost – will be a great hit. An older baby will appreciate sticks of tender parsnip as a finger food.
Parsnips belong to the same family as carrots, but are not as popular as they are not quite as nutrition-packed.
Parsnips are good for baby (and you):
Parsnips provide fibre which aids the digestive system and helps maintain low blood sugar levels, and good amounts of calcium – important for bone development. They also contain vitamin C and a little protein.
Hints on buying and storing:
- Parsnips are at their best in winter – freezing temperatures improve their flavour.
- Look for firmness, with no damage, dryness or wrinkling, or bruising.
- As with carrots, there should be no new little leaves sprouting from the top or hair-like roots down the sides.
- At home, keep refrigerated and only peel or cut immediately before cooking.
- If peeled or cut, cover with water and use within 2 days.
Tips on cooking:
- Wash parsnips well, and peel.
- Steaming retains most nutrients, but roasting brings out more flavour.
Ideas for ways of including parsnip in your baby’s meals:
- Add a little apple or pear puree.
- Combine with carrot, pumpkin, courgette (zucchini), peas, or green beans.
- Mix into cooked lentils or brown rice.
- Include in cooked beef, pork or chicken dishes.
Please remember: Always consult your baby’s paediatrician or doctor about introducing new foods.
This information presented to you acts as a guide which contains researched information only and is not intended to replace advice from a qualified health professional.
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